Monday, August 17, 2009


I have used PowerPoint since I was in primary school and remember loving using the different effects, colours, pictures and fonts to make the display exciting. However, when I was creating a presentation for my students, I struggled to find ways of keeping the slides engaging. They were filled with text, some pictures and incorporated many types of effects. When I was looking through it I thought to myself, “How are they engaged by just watching this presentation?” and “What makes this different to a whiteboard?”. I wasn’t convinced, so I decided to add links to YouTube and to interactive websites, music, and animations, before it really got exciting.

As a teacher based presentation tool - The effectiveness of PowerPoint is determined by the user and the content that they employ. A PowerPoint presentation in its simplest form, displaying content could be the same as using a whiteboard. Learning managers should not assume their students are engaged by using a PowerPoint presentation.

Engagement Theory explains that students are intrinsically motivated to learn due to the meaningful nature of the learning environment and activities (Kearsley & Shneiderman, 1999). Therefore, for a PowerPoint presentation to be engaging, it must contain content that is meaningful and allow students to interact with the technology.

I believe PowerPoint can be a great timesaver for learning managers. By using PowerPoint instead of a blackboard or whiteboard, learning mangers have more hands on time with their students. Also, using different media elements in the PowerPoint can help engage students of all learning styles.

Til next time,



Kearsley, G., & Shneiderman, B. (1999). Engagement Theory:. Retrieved August 15th, 2009, from

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